LBN – Special Report – Thursday, August 10th

*Deep Divisions Emerge in Trump Administration as North Korea Threatens War:

Senior American officials sent mixed signals on North Korea on Wednesday as President Trump’s “fire and fury” warning rattled allies and adversaries alike, a sign of his administration’s deep divisions as the outcast state once again threatened to wage nuclear war on the United States. The president’s advisers calibrated his dire warning with statements that, if not directly contradictory, emphasized different points. Secretary of State Rex W. Tillerson stressed diplomacy and reassured Americans that they could “sleep well at night,” while Defense Secretary Jim Mattis said North Korea risked “the end of its regime and the destruction of its people” if it did not “stand down.” North Korea gave no indication that it would do so. In a statement late Wednesday, the North Korean military dismissed Mr. Trump’s fire-and-fury warning on Tuesday as a “load of nonsense” and said only “absolute force” would work on someone so “bereft of reason.” The military threatened to “turn the U.S. mainland into the theater of a nuclear war” and added that any American strike on North Korean missile and nuclear targets would be “mercilessly repelled.”
*SILENT ATTACK- Hearing Loss of U.S. Diplomats in Cuba Caused by ‘Covert Device’

The bizarre hearing loss experienced by U.S. diplomats in Cuba was likely caused by a covert sonic device, the Associated Press reports. The Americans experienced a sudden and unexplained loss of hearing in fall 2016, leading them to cut their assignments short. Some of the affected Americans have since had to start using hearing aids. An investigation has determined that envoys were exposed to a secret device outside of their residences, but it is still unclear if the technology was intended to be a weapon or to serve some other purpose, U.S. officials said. In reported retaliation, the United States has expelled two Cuban diplomats.
*WHO READS LBN? Actress Hannah Murray

*Report: Tesla Close to Testing Prototype for Self-Driving Semi-Truck

Tesla is getting close to testing a prototype of a long-haul, electric semi-truck that can drive itself and automatically follow a lead vehicle in a “platoon,” Reuters reports. The electric-car maker discussed possible road tests for the new technology with the Nevada Department of Motor Vehicles in an email exchange seen by Reuters. A regulatory official with the company told Nevada authorities the goal is to test two trucks “without having a person in the vehicle.” Tesla was also due to meet with authorities in California to discuss similar plans, according to the report. Chief Executive Elon Musk said earlier this year that the company’s new electric truck would be unveiled in September, though he didn’t mention self-driving capabilities at that time.

*Taylor Swift’s Mom Wanted to Keep Groping Allegation Private

Taylor Swift’s mother said in court Wednesday that she didn’t initially report allegations that a radio station DJ groped her daughter because they wanted to keep the matter private and didn’t want it to affect Swift’s career, the AP reported on ThursdayAndrea Smith said her daughter was “humiliated” and “really shaken” after the 2013 meet-and-greet with DJ David Mueller. “I did not want to make her relive this moment over and over again,” she said. “…We absolutely wanted to keep it private, but we didn’t want him to get away with it.” Mueller sued Swift for getting him fired after she told his boss he had inappropriately touched her during a photo-op. Swift countersued for sexual assault.

*Massage Envy Exec Dead After Alleged Stun-Gun Attack on His Parents:
An executive at Massage Envy died in police custody this week after allegedly attacking his parents with a stun gun in Scottsdale, Arizona. The mother of 55-year-old Lee EdwardKnowlton reportedly called 911 at about 7 p.m. Monday to report that her son, who was previously an executive at Cold Stone Creamery, was assaulting her and her husband. When police went inside, they found Knowlton and his 80-year-old father on the floor covered in blood. As authorities were handcuffing Knowlton, he allegedly stopped breathing. He was immediately taken to a local hospital, where he was soon pronounced dead. His parents were in stable condition as ofTuesday evening.

*Billie Lourd to Inherit $7M from Carrie Fisher:

Billie Lourd has been working hard to get used to life without her grandmother and mother around. Now, new court documents reportedly reveal what the star’s late mother left her after her passing. Carrie Fisher, Lourd’s mother, died in December 2016. It was previously reported that the late “Star Wars” actress left her daughter a slew of owned assets including bank accounts, a 2016 Tesla S, ownership of several LLCs and a life insurance policy. This doesn’t even cover Fisher’s various jewelry items, artwork, and collectibles.
*LBN-NOTICED:   ***Azealia Banks bringing a homemade cake to the Public hotel rooftop to celebrate Scott Lipps’ new agency, Lipps LA.   ***Media expert and author Michael Levineback from Israel after a week’s trip to both Tel Aviv and Jerusalem.

*LBN-HEALTH WATCH:   ***One is the loneliest number and, sometimes, it could even be the most dangerous. Loneliness is just as much of a public health hazard as obesity, if not more so, according to research presented at the American Psychological Association annual conference last week. Research from 148 studies, involving 300,000 participants, showed people who had greater social connections had a 50% reduced risk of dying early, and another set of research involving 70 studies representing 3.4 million people in North America, Europe, Asia and Australia found social isolation, loneliness or living alone each played a significant role in premature death. Over 42 million Americans over the age of 45 suffer from chronic loneliness, according to the AARP. More than one-quarter of the population lives alone and more than half are unmarried, according to the U.S. Census Bureau. People that considered themselves lonely were less likely to engage in social activities, such as going to religious services, volunteering or finding a hobby, the AARP study concluded. (It’s based on a scale created by UCLA, where respondents were asked about various characteristics linked to loneliness. (The AARP promotes group activities for seniors.)

*LBN-BOOK NEWS: William Morrow has named Shelby Meizlik to the newly-created role of v-p of special events and creative strategies in an effort to expand the ways in which its publicity department promotes its authors. Kelly Rudolph has also been promoted to senior group publicity director, overseeing all imprints under the Morrow umbrella.

*LBN-SPOTLIGHT: Milton Friedman: The Rise of Socialism is Absurd. Milton Friedman, recipient of the 1976 Nobel Prize for Economic Science, was one of the most recognizable and influential proponents of liberty and markets in the 20th century, and the leader of the Chicago School of economics.———-

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*LBN-SPOTLIGHT: “Without Notes” with Susan Estrich – Episode 1: The Early Years  —-

*LBN-R.I.P.:   ***Alan Peckolick, who overcame a failed art school career to emerge as a leading designer of some the world’s most distinctive logos, died on Aug. 3 in Danbury, Conn. He was 76. The cause was brain damage sustained after a fall, his wife, Jessica Weber, said. He had Parkinson’s disease.   ***Glen Campbell, the sweet-voiced, guitar-picking son of a sharecropper who became a recording, television and movie star in the 1960s and ’70s, waged a publicized battle with alcohol and drugs and gave his last performances while in the early stages of Alzheimer’s disease, died on Tuesday in Nashville. He was 81. Tim Plumley, his publicist, said the cause was Alzheimer’s.


*LBN-OVERHEARD:   ***Jim Carrey was given permission by a Los Angeles court on Tuesday to use his ex-girlfriend’s medical records during the wrongful death trial regarding her suicide. Carrey’s former girlfriend, Cathriona White, 30, died in Sept. 2015 from an overdose of prescription drugs, according to The Telegraph. White’s family accused the “Mask” actor of utilizing his “wealth, influence and celebrity status” to supply her with the drugs. Carrey’s defense argued that White, an Irish make-up artist, was prescribed pain killers after undergoing breast augmentation.   ***The very first sex scandal of Donald Trump’s presidency has just resulted in the birth of a love child. Married former White House communications director Jason Miller has fathered a son with Trump transition adviser A.J. Delgado following a wild night out in Las Vegas. Sources reported that Miller and Delgado went to a Las Vegas strip club with members of the media the night before Trump’s final debate against Hillary Clinton in late October. Miller confirmed the birth of their child on Wednesday.   ***Air travel is agony, even for superstars. Leonardo DiCaprio got stuck at Velana International Airport in the Maldives on Monday after he and his pals missed their connecting flight because the puddle-jumper from their swank resort was delayed. A source says the “Great Gatsby” star was able to book another flight — but still had to wait in the airport for five hours.   ***Anna Faris and Chris Pratt, who announced on Sunday that they’re splitting after eight years of marriage, have been having problems for at least a year and a half. “They’re very competitive with each other,” says a source. “At parties they compete over who’s funniest and get insecure if they’re not.” The discord also has to do with Pratt’s soaring career, with leads in “Jurassic Park” and “Guardians of the Galaxy.”